The deadline for comments on the Race to the Top guidance is rapidly approaching, so hurry up and get your critiques in.
Then, if you haven’t already, be sure to read my colleague Steve Sawchuk’s story on NEA’s comments.
And, (almost) hot off the presses, four education redesign-oriented groups have teamed up on a list of Race to the Top comments. They include the Center for American Progress, Democrats for Education Reform, the Ed Trust, and the Education Equality Project.
The groups recommend, among other ideas, that the Department of Education:
*Ask states how K-12 dollars are distributed, not just about how much they spend, to make sure poor and minority kids get their fair of the funding
*Require the state’s top higher education official to sign off on its application. Their approval would be a sign that the state’s standards really are “college-ready” and would show that universities are prepared to help with teacher professional development.
*Call on states to go beyond the National Assessment of Educational Progress in reporting progress at closing the achievement gap. That’s necessary partly because there are no mandatory, state-by-state results on NAEP at the high school level in reading and math, like there are for fourth and eighth grade. Instead, states should also be required to take a look at how their kids are progressing on state tests, the advocates say.
The groups also have some ideas for the State Fiscal Stabilization Fund guidance, which are worth taking a look at.
After you’ve checked them out, be sure to post any comments on the comments.